Resources - What is the single most influential book every programmer should read?
"The World is Flat" by Thomas Friedman. Excellence in programming demands an investment of mental energy and a dedication to continued learning comparable to the professions of medicine or law. It pays a fraction of what those professions pay, much less the wages paid to the mathematically savvy who head into the finance sector. And wages for constructing code are eroding because it's a profession that is relatively easy for the intelligent and self-disciplined in most economies to enter. Programming has already eroded to the point of paying less than, say, plumbing. Plumbing can't be "offshored." If you live in North America or Europe, are young, and are smart, programming is not a rational career choice. If you love programming and for that reason intend to make it your career, then it behooves you to develop a cold-eyed understanding of the forces that are, and will continue, to make it a harder and harder profession in which to make a living.